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31st voters go with incumbents
After months of campaigning, voters finally had their say last week and despite a national trend to the contrary, sent several incumbents from the 31st Legislative District back to Olympia to represent them for another term.
In what was one of the most talked-about races in the region, Sen. Pam Roach had little trouble holding onto her seat in the 31st Legislative District, defeating challenger Matt Richardson in what became one of the most bitterly-fought races in the state.
Voters returned the veteran lawmaker with 67 percent support, favoring an incumbent that has been barred by her own Republican caucus for anger issues. Richardson carried even more personal baggage, including allegations of sexual misconduct during his teen years and his departure from teaching positions with three schools.
State Rep. Christopher Hurst also bucked the trend that saw voters favor new faces. He pulled nearly 58 percent of the vote and was elected for a fifth time. The only candidate in the state listed as an Independent Democrat, Hurst defeated Sumner resident Patrick Reed, who did not mount an aggressive campaign.
When it came filling an empty seat in the state House of Representatives, 31st District voters chose Enumclaw’s Cathy Dahlquist over Lake Tapps resident Shawn Bunney. Dahlquist easily carried King County while Bunney was favored in Pierce where he served as a county councilmember, but Dahlquist had more than 52 percent of the total following Saturday’s update.
Bonney Lake resident Dan Roach, a veteran of the state Legislature, will have a new job in January. He was elected to the District 1 position on the Pierce County Council, receiving 63 percent support to defeat Pat McEligott. Roach will replace Bunney, who had to move on due to term limits.
Election results are not final or official until certified. By law, Nov. 23 is the last day for county canvassing boards to certify results; Dec. 2 is the last day for the Office of the Secretary of State to certify General Election returns.
To see updated results from the election, visit http://vote.wa.gov/Elections/WEI/?ElectionID=37